The Encouraging Word Blog
Author: Rich Rudowske Created: 7/30/2007 9:14 PM
Welcome to the blog! Our family will post updates, musings, and other fun stuff from our experiences in Botswana to work in the ministry of Bible Translation.

By the Numbers
By Rich Rudowske on 6/25/2009 6:54 AM

This past Sunday we wrapped up our prefield speaking tour at Trinity Lutheran in Sawyer Michigan.  As we reach this milestone I want to share a few numbers that mark this event:

9 - Number of states where we have supporting churches praying, encouraging, or supporting us

40 - Number of churches that we spoke at

46 - Number of times Rich preached the sermon 'In the Story'

21 - Number of other sermons Rich preached

24031 - Number of miles driven since last summer

200000 - The Plymouth Grand Voyager (Purple Palace of Partnership) hit this milestone on the way home from Sawyer.

147 - the mile marker on I55 South in Illinois where we hit 200k.

20 - the number of nights we had to spend in a hotel in the last year - the rest of the travel we were housed by friends and family - THANK YOU!

We thank the Lord for these milest ...

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Embracing Differences
By Rich Rudowske on 6/13/2009 4:15 AM

WIth the coming of interleague play in Major League Baseball this weekend, an age old debate heats up once more:  The DH.  Some love it, some hate it. But regardless of that the call from both sides is generally the same:  Make both leagues the same -either do it in both or don't do it in either. 

I for one prefer a different stance.  I think that it is great that we have two different major leagues and I resist the idea of trying to make them one homogenous 'product'.  I prefer instead to enjoy the American League's increased offense from nine solid hitters and the flexibility of moving position players around the whole batting order while at the same time enjoying the nuances of the National League game with the double switches, pinch hitting etc. related to the pitcher position.  Both games have different aspects to be appreciated, not blended into some generic no name 'baseball'.

And on the week ...

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That's how we roll
By Rich Rudowske on 6/9/2009 4:41 AM

One month and five days before we move to Botswana for three years and where am I (Rich) at right now?  That's right, my mom and dad's house in Michigan.  While my lovely wife back in St Louis figures out how to put all of our earthly possessions in 14 pieces of checked luggage and seven carryon pieces.  And she is LOVING it.  Two sons and one big guy out of the house has apparently made this task much easier for her.  Cuz that's how we roll.

So meanwhile I am in the basement suite in Michigan finishing up some correspondence to partners, prepping liturgy for the commissioning service, and sorting through file boxes of important papers and documents to give to our power of attorney.  Cuz that's how we roll.

DId I mention that I am still speaking every weekend too?  My final 'Smitten with the Mitten' tour of Michigan (yes I stole that from Rob Bell) has us at St Paul Cassopolis, Trinity Berrien Sprin ...

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Tickets Purchased!
By Rich Rudowske on 5/28/2009 6:01 PM

Well, I guess the title says it all.  I'm still stunned to be honest.  It is actually happening!

The labor exemption was received on Monday, before I had even written the last blog entry.  He knows our prayer before we even ask!  We leave from Chicago on Wednesday July 15th and arrive in Gaborone Botswana on Friday morning July 17th. 

More details to come!

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Travel Update
By Rich Rudowske on 5/26/2009 3:20 PM

Hope everyone had a great Memorial Day weekend.  We sure did in Hudson Michigan at Our Saviour Lutheran Church and with our friends Pastor Troy & Stephanie Neujahr and their nine children.  They are good friends of ours from sem. days and it was very good to spend some time with them.

This week there are a couple of things going on that we ask you to commit to prayer.  First and foremost, we hope to hear from Botswana that the government has granted us a labor exemption.  That is a certification we need to have in hand when we enter the country.  As soon as we hear that we have it, LBT plans to buy our tickets.  An itinerary I saw a couple of weeks ago had us leaving July 15 and arriving in Botswana on July 17.  So, we request prayer that the certificate comes this week.

Second, we have a concern with the van I (Rich) have been driving for PD all year.  On the left side there appear ...

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New Prayer Letter Posted
By Rich Rudowske on 5/15/2009 5:36 AM

Our newest newsletter has been posted on the 'Newsletters' tab.  Take a look at it for more info about our upcoming commissioning service as well as tentative plans for a July departure to Botswana!

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May Update
By Rich Rudowske on 5/7/2009 6:50 PM

Dear friends,

Another month has sailed by and the Lord has done so much!  Rich, Chris & Kathy finished the last of their extended trips away from home and are back in Saint Louis.  Things stay busy though as we travel together for the next several weekends to Iowa, Illinois, and good ole Michigan one more time.

We met our funding goal for the end of April and yesterday afternoon received official word from LBT that we are approved to depart to our assignment in Botswana.  This does not mean that we no longer need funding, as we now need to maintain this level of funding.  We ask you to pray for the Lord to continue to provide financial partners to join in our ministry. 

This does mean that we will now begin the process of negotiating when we will arrive in Botswana, orientation, etc.  Our colleague Carl Knight is traveling and researching housing on our behal ...

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Christopher Confirmation & Botswana Logistics
By Rich Rudowske on 5/6/2009 1:39 AM

We had a good weekend in Michigan wrapping up a 10 day speaking trip and Chris's confirmation at Trinity Lutheran St Joseph Michigan.  It was great to see so many family and friends to celebrate Chris's next step in faith - confirming what his sponsors and mother and I spoke on his behalf at his Baptism.  I have not posted any pics on this site yet but you can see a few at our facebook site by clicking here

Now we're back in Saint Louis for a couple of weeks and in phone and email conversations with folks in Botswana getting details nailed down.  LBT admin. meets in the next week to determine whether or not to approve departure and then we'll start negotiating dates and so forth with the folks on the Botswana end. 

In the meantime I (Rich) am spending an hour or two ea ...

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Good News Monday!
By Rich Rudowske on 4/27/2009 10:19 PM

Dear Faithful supporters,

We ask you to include in your prayers this week prayers of praise to the Lord for good news about two of the items we have been praying about!
1.  Michael Megahan, Carl Knight, and Dean Moitlho successfully completed survey work among Kgalagari villages last week and the raw data of their assessment shows that a Bible translation project is quite viable.  This means that there is a need for translation, the community is not likely to abandon the language, and there is a willingness to partner in the work, provide qualified personnel, and some measure of financial support as well.  This is what we suspected, but are glad to see that the survey bears that out!  So this is very good news!
2.  Praise God that with a week to go in April, we have surpassed a funding goal set for May 1 that should enable us to get a go ahead on departure this summer.  We still await the final ...

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The Call
By Rich Rudowske on 4/22/2009 4:34 PM

Here at our home on the campus of Concordia Seminary St Louis today is Call Day.  It is a day when the approximately 100 or so candidates for pastoral and deaconess ministry receive their first congregational calls - the culmination of four years of study and practice and the confirmation of an inward call that they felt quite a while back that led them to seek training for the ministry.

The process of formation and of waiting leading up to the commencement of the call can feel difficult.  However, if we stop looking forward so much and pay attention to what God is doing in our lives right now, what He is teaching in our lives right now, how are struggles right now and forming us more and more to be the people who He calls us to be - it just changes things so much.  Every day and moment lived and breathed and worked and struggled through is an event that God is sovereign over and used by Him to form us.  I have especially needed that message the ...

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